A young couple snuggles up in bed and wonder, is it good to sleep without a pillow
Comfier Sleep by Alex Irving 4 minutes

Is it better to sleep with or without a pillow?

Is it better to sleep without a pillow?

To pillow or not to pillow — that’s the question. With so much choice out there, finding the right pillow can quickly become a thing of nightmares. So much so that you might find yourself giving up altogether and opting for no pillow at all.

But is it good to sleep without a pillow? Does sleeping without a pillow help posture? And does it help you sleep better?

Never fear. We’re here to set the record straight, and we’re bringing sleep and clinical psychologist Andrew Mair along with us for the ride.

Is sleeping without a pillow good for you?

When we sleep, our body is in the same position for hours at a time. This can cause strain in certain areas of the body, namely the neck and shoulders.

Pillows are designed to support you while you sleep. They help to support the neck, help to keep the spine in alignment and create a comfortable sleeping experience, which is essential to good sleep. They’re clever little things, really.

Why position’s important when choosing a pillow

Even with the best pillows around, however, we all have our preferred sleeping positions, and so that means we all need slightly different set-ups.

Love sleeping on your back? You might benefit from a pillow under your knees to help keep the natural curve in your lower back and reduce any back pain. So if you’re wondering, ‘Does putting a pillow under your knees help?’ the answer is that it does.

More of a side sleeper? A foam or latex pillow will provide the necessary support to keep your head and neck in the right place.

And if you’re living large by sleeping on your stomach, you might find that a softer pillow works wonders, or that lying flat without a pillow helps to keep your spine in alignment.

So, is it good to use a pillow while sleeping? Well, if you’re down for a cloud that cradles your neck and the kind of sleep that gets you talking, then sleeping with a pillow might just be your jam.

A woman sleeps soundly on her Koala pillow
If you do like sleeping with a pillow, make sure it’s a good one.

A little pillow history

Pillows have been used for centuries worldwide. At one point, they were filled with straw, cotton or other natural materials, and were sometimes even made from wood.

“For a long time, the Japanese often used wooden-type headrests,” says Andrew. “And their society functioned and flourished over many, many thousands of years.” 

But he goes on to say that the type of pillow you need comes down to perception and minimising any anxieties around sleep. “The simplest solution is to have the pillow that suits you and that you feel confident about.”

Nowadays, pillows are most likely filled with feathers or manmade fibres, or made from latex and memory foam. It’s the stuff that makes cushions feel blissfully plush and sofas feel eternally cosy.

But what does sleeping without a pillow do to your body?

Does sleeping without a pillow help posture?

We know there are proven benefits to giving your head and neck adequate support while you sleep. The best pillows need to do exactly that. But what kind of pillow?

A 2020 study found that pillows made from latex and/or memory foam are the best choice for people who suffer from neck pain. The study found that these types of pillows provide more support for the head and neck while you sleep — love! They also provide added comfort and help to reduce neck pain — double love!

Another question we’ve been asked before is ‘Is it best to sleep with one or two pillows?’  Your comfort is key, so this is really your call. But if you’ve got the right pillow, we’d say that the chances are you need only one.

How to choose a new pillow

To help us with this one, Andrew explains the connection between sleep, anxiety and what it has to do with our choice of pillow.

“If you go to bed experiencing some level of anxiety about having a bad night’s sleep, it’s very likely that it will become your reality.

“The most important thing is that you feel comfortable and happy with your choice of mattress, bedding and pillow. If you are happy with your pillow, psychologically speaking, you are more likely to have a good sleep.”

So, if you’re looking for a pillow that supports your head, neck and spine while you sleep and one that you feel comfortable on, stick with us and we’ll find you that perfect fit. The Koala pillow range has something for you, no matter your sleeping position.

Koala pillows

Time for a new pillow? Take one step closer to better sleep with a Koala pillow. Designed to give you support in the places you need it most, it’s the cherry on top of our Koala bedroom collection.

🐨 Koala Pillow: Our best-selling pillow is flippable, boasting a softer and a firmer side – great for all types of sleepers! But don’t just take our word for it. The Koala Pillow won Canstar Blue’s ‘Most Satisfied Customers’ Award in 2021 and 2022.

☁️ Cloudy Pillow: Offering that plush downy feel but without the feathers, the Cloudy Pillow is super-soft beauty. It’s been designed with all types of sleepers in mind.

❄️Breeze Pillow: The memory foam in the Breeze Pillow absorbs the heat from your body and then releases it to ensure you’re always at the perfect temperature. You’re welcome. 

Need help deciding whether to go for the Koala, Breeze or Cloudy? We’re here to help with this super-simple quiz

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